Thursday, February 18, 2010

Ex 31 for Feb 10

Just when you feel you're about to go under because of the details, the passage gives you a perspective as high as a mountain (Ex 29:43-46; 31:12-18).

A paradigm for all technical work: "in the hearts of all who are skillful I have put skill" (31:6).

A paradigm for all rest: "on the seventh day He ceased from labor, and was refreshed" (31:17).

A paradigm that work can be shared: God tells Moses "see, I have called by name Bezalel" (31:1) and "I myself have appointed with him Oholiab" .... (Also a reminder that those God has called us to work with might be strangely named, or otherwise different than us: "tribe of Dan" (31:6)! :)

Our sense of what holiness means is being built up in this book, increasingly. Holy places, holy things, holy gifts (Ex 28); holy garments, "for glory and for beauty" (Ex 28:40); consecration of priests, anointings, ordinations, atonements (Ex 29-30); ransom, participated in by all equally, for atonement (30:12-16). Incense and oil, uniquely made, not to be used by all (30:32, 38).

What is the greater "heavy statement," I have no idea ... the bombshell dropped in 29:46, which ties the book together from its beginning to there ... or the bombshell dropped in 31:13. Both are highlighted by their content (which, unlike Italics, which they didn't have, translates to all languages -- repetition of the significant phrase of Exodus: "I am the LORD" (29:46; 31:13). If calling it "italics" doesn't help us see the significance of it, capitalize it, or think of it as the Big Picture. We should not forget the big picture. Especially in lieu of what's about to come up in the next chapter.

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